Lok Sabha passes bill to provide 10 per cent reservation to EWS in general category

The Lok Sabha on January 8, 2019, passed the Constitution (124th Amendment) Bill 2019 to provide 10 percent reservation in jobs and educational institutions to economically backward section in the general category.

The lower house of the parliament passed the bill with over two-thirds of the majority, almost after four and a half hours of debate. While 323 members voted in favor of the bill, only three voted against it. The bill will now be tabled in the Rajya Sabha on January 9, where proceedings have already been extended by a day.

Prior to this, the Union Cabinet had on January 7, 2018, approved a proposal for introduction of the Constitution (124th Amendment) Bill, extending 10 percent quota to “the economically weaker sections in the general category who are not covered by any of the existing schemes of reservation”.

Key Highlights:-

1. Legislation in this regard is likely to be introduced in the Parliament on January 8, 2019.
2. An amendment of the Constitution can be initiated only by the introduction of a Bill in either House of Parliament.
3. The Bill must then be passed in each House by a majority of the total membership of that House and by a special majority of not less than two-thirds of the members of that House present and voting.
4. The Bill, passed by the required majority, is then presented to the President who shall give his assent to the Bill.
5. If the amendment seeks to make any change in any of the provisions mentioned in the proviso to article 368, it must be ratified by the Legislatures of not less than one-half of the States.
6. Although there is no prescribed time limit for ratification, it must be completed before the amending Bill is presented to the President for his assent.

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